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From me to you, highlighting challenges faced by girls

About

About

Hey there! My name is Terynn and I am the proud 42-year-young mother of three dear daughters (born 2002, 2004 and 2006) who are the inspirations for this blog. We live in Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, Canada. If our hometown sounds familiar you are likely a Sidney Crosby fan, a Trailer Park Boys fan or have heard of Rehtaeh Parsons, the 17-year-old girl whose tragic death has thrust victim-blaming into the spotlight.

Growing up playing sports and not being a lover of Barbies and dresses, I constantly experienced challenges simply because I was a girl. I felt pressured to act and look a certain way simply because I was a girl. I didn’t like it then and I certainly don’t like that these same challenges and pressures still exist for my daughters.

The defining moment…

In 2012 I found a book in my daughter’s backpack. The back cover was blue and the front cover had an illustration of a boy sailing on the ocean in rough waters. It was entitled Stories for Boys. When my daughter saw me with the book, she blushed and quickly placed it back into her backpack. She confided that she was embarrassed that the book she had chosen from the school library was “for boys”. That was a defining moment for me. Although we had had many discussions about the ludicrous societal expectations and rules based on gender, I knew then I had to make it abundantly clear that she had nothing to be ashamed of. Girls can read adventure stories.

This is when Dear Daughters was born!

What I Want Readers to Learn from Dear Daughters

I want to show that strong, confident, successful women have always and will continue to exist in all areas of life. I want to introduce the struggles (new and old) faced by women and how close (or how far) we are to eliminating gender bias in the world. I want everyone to remember that every woman is somebody’s daughter. I want to show that gender bias occurs on a daily basis, and often we are unaware it is happening.

What I Don’t Want Readers to Take Away from Dear Daughters

I do not want people thinking that this is a male-bashing, men-are-no good-and-we-don’t-need-them-at-all type of blog. It is quite the opposite really. The hypermasculinization of boys and men in our society plays a huge role in the gender bias towards girls and women. We need to fix the ridiculous societal expectations and rules we have in place for boys and men just as much as we do the ones for girls and women.

What challenges do girls and women face on a daily basis?

1. The sexualization of their bodies and the importance that is put on their appearance. Girls and women are viewed as objects and/or possessions, increasing the likelihood that they will become victims of sexual and/or physical abuse and then ridiculed and blamed for what happened to them (victim-blaming).

This Film Shows What it Would Be Like to be a Man if Today’s Roles Were Reversed
7 Super Bowl Commercials That Don’t Get It #NotBuyingIt
A Short Video Demonstrating How Media Fails Women

2. The tendencies of people to try to “protect” girls and to impose limitations in their lives. Girls and women are not encouraged to be active, competitive and/or aggressive. They are constantly stereotyped and encouraged to fulfill caring and nurturing roles.

I Cannot Believe My Ears…Isn’t It 2013
13-year-old Convinces Hasbro to Create A Gender Neutral Easy Bake Oven
Your Votes Are in on Girly Girl

3. Being second-class citizens. Being a girl or doing anything “like a girl” is a negative thing.

“Like A Girl” Shouldn’t Be a Bad Thing
Mythbusters Tests the “Throws Like a Girl” Insult

4. Inequalities – Less pay for the same work. Denied or limited access to education. Arranged marriages. The list goes on and on.

14-year-old Malala Yousafzaui Was Shot For Promoting Education For Girls
It is Hard to Believe Women are Still Denied Access To Education in the Year 2012

Where to find me

When I am not writing, I am coaching soccer and ringette, playing hockey and serving as chauffeur to my three dear daughters. You can follow Dear Daughters on Twitter @DearDaughters, me on Twitter @writerbychoice1 and Instagram @writerbychoice and Dear Daughters on Facebook at facebook.com/DearDaughters.

Throwback Thursday – McDonald’s Happy Meals

Posted by on Dec 11, 2014 in Daily Doses, Food/Beverages, Marketing, Throwback Thursday | 0 comments

McDonald’s first Happy Meal appeared in the US in June of 1979 and cost $1.00. It was circus-wagon themed and children received one of six toys: a “McDoodler” stencil, a “McWrist” wallet, an ID bracelet, a puzzle lock, a spinning top or a McDonaldland-character eraser. You can watch a video for a commercial introducing the Happy Meal photo credit: jpowers65 via photopin cc see @McDonald’s twitpic picture of the first Happy Meal. Share this:Share on...

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Wordy Wednesday – Pink

Posted by on Dec 10, 2014 in Daily Doses, Pink is for Girls?, Society Says, Wordy Wednesday | 0 comments

Wordy Wednesday – Pink

According to dictionary.com pink is defined as 1. a color varying from light crimson to pale reddish purple. 2. any of several plants of the genus Dianthus, as the clove pink or carnation. 3. the flower of such a plant; carnation. 4. the highest form or degree; prime: a runner in the pink of condition. 5. (often initial capital letter). Also, pinko. Slang: Disparaging. a person with left-wing, but not extreme, political opinions. 6. Business Informal. a carbon copy, as of a sales slip or invoice, made on pink tissue paper. So pink is just a...

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Tally Tuesday – McDonald’s Happy Meal Toys

Posted by on Dec 9, 2014 in Food/Beverages, Marketing, Tally Tuesdays | 0 comments

Tally Tuesday – McDonald’s Happy Meal Toys

Not only does McDonald’s continue to ask its customers if the toy that comes in their Happy Meal is for a boy or a girl, they actually ring it into their system that way! Check out a picture of a receipt from our last visit to McDonald’s where my three daughters all ordered the “toy for boys”.   To read more about our experiences with McDonald’s please try our blog posts listed below: Dear Daughters, McDonald’s Happy Meal Toys Are Not a Trivial Matter Dear Daughters, We Are Not the Only Ones Who...

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#morethanwhatyousee Monday

Posted by on Dec 8, 2014 in #morethanwhatyousee Monday, Daily Doses | 0 comments

#morethanwhatyousee Monday

Every Monday on Dear Daughters we will be celebrating #morethanwhatyousee Monday! This is when we celebrate people for who they are and not what they look like. Currently, a woman’s worth is measured by appearance. She is judged on her hairstyle, her makeup, her weight, how she dresses, etc. There is no weight given to what she does, what she says, how she acts, what she knows. Did you know that: American teenagers spend: 31 hours a week watching T.V., 17 hours a week listening to music, 3 hours a week watching movies, 4 minutes a week...

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Food For Thought Friday – Pro Hockey Life

Posted by on Dec 5, 2014 in Daily Doses, Food For Thought Friday, Hockey/Ringette, Marketing, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Food For Thought Friday – Pro Hockey Life

Pro Hockey Life claims to cater to one clientele: hockey enthusiasts – period. When I walk into their stores, I certainly do appreciate that there is no “girls” and “boys” sections but their advertising is old school perpetuating the “only boys play hockey” school of thought. There are many world class and professional women’s hockey players they could feature in their advertising along with the NHL players plastered all over their stores. Share this:Share on...

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Throwback Thursday – Isobel Stanley

Posted by on Dec 4, 2014 in Daily Doses, Hockey/Ringette, Notable Women, Past and Present, Throwback Thursday, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Throwback Thursday – Isobel Stanley

According to CBC’s biography of Isobel Stanley, this photograph taken at Rideau Hall in 1890 is thought to be the first recorded image of women’s participation in hockey. Isobel Stanley is the player in white, wearing the customary long skirt. Together with her brothers, Isobel is said to have helped convince her father to create what is now know as the greatest prize in hockey – the Stanley Cup. Share this:Share on...

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Wordy Wednesday – “Chicks With Sticks”

Posted by on Dec 3, 2014 in Daily Doses, Wordy Wednesday | 0 comments

Wordy Wednesday – “Chicks With Sticks”

Dear Daughters, We have all heard “Chicks with Sticks” used to describe a female hockey or ringette player. Many girls and women wear this title proudly. In fact, youngest dear daughter, one of your favourite shirts was your black “Chicks with Sticks” shirt. But what’s up with using the word chick to describe females? If not for the fact that it rhymes with sticks, would we even use this term to describe ourselves? According to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary chick is defined as: 1 a : a domestic chicken;...

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Tally Tuesday – ProHockey Life

Posted by on Dec 2, 2014 in Daily Doses, Hockey/Ringette, Marketing, Tally Tuesdays, Women in Sport | 0 comments

Let your voice be heard on Tally Tuesdays here on Dear Daughters! Take a new survey each week! While shopping in ProHockey Life in Dartmouth Crossing, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, I noticed that there are absolutely no pictures or even a mention of a female hockey player. Seeing that ProHockey Life says they are ” proud to be the world’s largest hockey centric retailer” don’t you think they should represent both male and female hockey players in their stores? Please let me know if the ProHockey Life store in your community...

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Dear Daughters, Local Toy and Bookstore, Tattletales, Let’s Children Choose

Posted by on Sep 30, 2014 in Marketing, Toys/Literature | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Local Toy and Bookstore, Tattletales, Let’s Children Choose

Dear Daughters, One of our favourite stores, Tattletales, has passed the test. Not only do they have a toy, book and collectibles selection that suits every child, they also organize their store by theme and function of their inventory, and NOT by gender. This means that if you want Lego, you simply visit the section with Lego and other construction sets. When it comes to books are you interested in the Fantasy genre? If so, you need walk no farther than the Fantasy book section. Puzzles are in the puzzle section. You get the picture. There...

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Dear Daughters, Would You Buy Pink for Your Male Dog?

Posted by on Sep 29, 2014 in Pink is for Girls?, Society Says | 0 comments

Dear Daughters, Would You Buy Pink for Your Male Dog?

Dear Daughters, On September 7, 2014 we welcomed a beautiful and wonderful baby boy into our family – our little Boston Terrier, Ringer (named for one of your favourite sports – ringette). We went shopping for him the other day and were faced with a moment of truth when the harness we all agreed would best fit him and best suit our needs was available in only one colour… Would we buy a pink harness for him or not? I have been on this Earth for 39 years and 10 months. The “pink is for girls” mantra has been around...

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